Do you ever feel like the grim reaper at meal time?

A total nag? Find candy wrappers under your kids’ beds?

Maybe it’s just me. But when our then two-year-old was diagnosed with eosinophilic esophagitis five years ago, I went into full-blown nutrition researcher-internet doctor-read every book I could get my hands on-mode. Eliminating dairy dramatically changed his life for the better, and ours: No more screaming and writhing in pain for hours every. single. night.

And my obsession with a healthy house took hold. And this is kind of how it went:

kids and green juice

You may have your own variation of wanting to do right.

So after our two-year-old’s GI troubles were cured, there was the dilemma of life without everything that seemed fun and delicious to him. Enter creativity. And coconut milk yogurt. And vegan desserts.

I’ve been all over the map as a mom, and thankfully leaning less dogmatic with my healthy these days meets with a lot less resistance.  There’s still the occasional rebellion, of course.

But I’ve learned an important lesson:

Focus on the sweet stuff first, the feel good. Do good comes later.

Back to the balls.

These are balls of joy. They are miraculous. Turn your day around. Can’t believe they’re good for you (and please don’t even mention that to the naysayer/s in your life if you’re hoping to entice someone over to the clean side).

Good for:

  • breakfast on the go
  • cut into bites for pick-me-up snacks
  • perfect school lunch dessert
  • bake sale at school (even though they are mostly raw – just sauce is slightly warmed)
  • decadent present in parchment or small glass jar
  • protein bites for young (and older) athletes
  • a way better choice than Ben & Jerry’s at 10 pm (not that you would do that)
  • an intro to retraining the taste buds with healthier choices in other faves like pizza, mac+cheese(less)

What are your favorite healthy desserts?

Would love to hear from you and if you know of someone who might like this recipe, please share!

Important note: I bow to Angela Liddon big time. She is the creator of Oh She Glows, a website on my speed-dial (if there was such a thing)…but now proudly prop her book on my kitchen island! Today’s is one of my all-time favorite recipes. Tweaked oh-so-slightly for our peanut-allergic little man, pumped up the super foods a little, and definitely rolled into balls because it’s easier (for me), thanks be to Angela.

Great Balls of Lifeyum!

Serves 8-10
Prep time 20 minutes
Dietary Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Meal type Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Misc Child Friendly, Freezable, Pre-preparable
Website Oh She Glows
The best way to ease healthy into your loved ones lives is through dessert: Angela Liddon's Easy No Bake Protein Bars modified into chocolate-drizzled balls are a uniform hit in my house with six children (four boys, two girls) and a husband who don't care about or fully understand all things vegan/raw/low glycemic. They don't last long!


Protein Ball

  • 1.5 cups gluten-free rolled oats (blended into a flour)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened/unflavored vegan protein powder (I followed Angela Liddon's advice and use Sunwarrior's Warrior Blend Natural)
  • 1/2 cup rice crisp cereal (I use Barbara's Brown Rice Crisp cereal)
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt (to taste (I use a big pinch))
  • 1/2 cup nut or sunflower seed butter (our preference is raw organic almond butter)
  • 1/2 cup grade B pure Maple syrup (for a lower glycemic alternative, try liquid coconut nectar or 1/4 cup nectar, 1/4 cup maple syrup)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Chocolate drizzle A (Optional)

  • 3 tablespoons mini dark chocolate chips (we use Enjoy Life)
  • 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil

Chocolate drizzle B (Optional)

  • 2 tablespoons yacon syrup
  • 1 tablespoon cacao powder (we use Navitas)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil


Store in freezer or fridge for best consistency.


Dry ingredients
Step 1 Mix the oat flour, protein powder, rice crisp, and salt together in a large bowl. My favorite add-ins during this stage: chia seeds, probiotic powder (we use Dr. Frank Lipman's Probiotic Powder), hemp seed, raw shredded coconut. Be mindful of how much dry you add as the consistency can get too dry when mixed, but it's fixable with a splash or two of non-dairy milk.
Wet ingredients
Step 2 Add in nut/seed butter, maple syrup (and/or low glycemic liquid sweetener of choice such as raw coconut nectar), and vanilla. Stir well to combine. If the consistency seems too dry, add a splash of non-dairy milk and mix again.
Chocolate drizzle A
Step 3 Melt the chocolate chips and coconut oil together in a small pot over low heat. When half of the chips have melted, remove from heat and stir until smooth. {Follow this advice; burnt chocolate doesn't taste nearly as good!}
(Raw) Chocolate drizzle B
Step 4 Optional raw chocolate sauce: 2 Tbsp Yacon Syrup, 1 Tbsp raw Cacao Powder, 2 Tbsp extra virgin Coconut Oil. Whisk everything in a small bowl until smooth...and done! Important: All ingredients must be at room temperature and coconut oil melted so everything mixes well.

Raw chocolate sauce recipe from Navitas Naturals website:
Finishing touches
Step 5 After freezing balls (or smooshed variations) for 5-10 minutes, remove from freezer. If preparing bites, use sharp knife to slice in quarters.

If going for the chocolate drizzle, now is the time! You'll find that the chocolate chills very quickly on the balls/bites. Freeze again until set and store in the freezer for a week or longer in an airtight bag or container...but I doubt they'll last that long.